Baby bump status: With about a month to go I'm really popping out! I can see a big difference between 36 weeks and my last post at 32 weeks. Lately I've unintentionally run into things with my belly, whoops!, so I think its size is catching me off guard. The baby should be around 6 pounds now! Her movements aren't quite as big as she runs out of room, mostly some rolling as limbs move or a knee/foot pressing out, but she remains active. She still gets the hiccups fairly regularly. At my last midwife appointment my midwife didn't think the baby had dropped yet. This week I started feeling more pressure lower in my pelvis but I still don't think she's dropped. She's still head down and kicking up into my ribs. Also fun: 36 weeks with Dashiell.
How I'm feeling: Overall I'm still feeling good but definitely feeling pretty pregnant. Bending over is really uncomfortable and even some sitting situations are uncomfortable. My ankles have started to get a little swollen on some days although it's not as bad as it was in previous pregnancies. I have pretty good energy during the day although my size and shape feels a little inhibiting for getting things done. I'm also noticing that I'm getting out of breath more quickly. Emotionally I am thinking a lot about the birth and about meeting our baby girl. I can't believe we're just about at the point where it "could be any day now!"...or it could be another five weeks.
Eating: Heartburn and a big baby crowding my stomach are throwing off my regular eating habits but this is nothing new. I'm starting to daydream about the meals I'll eat post-birth: pizza, spicy curries, chocolate... A lunch I've been loving is a snacky plate of seed crackers (from Trader Joe's), cheese, Tofurky, and fruit. I try to eat a big lunch, a snack later in the afternoon, and be done for the day. It really helps me to not get bad heartburn at night. Although I do sometimes wake up hungry and have to eat a 2 a.m. snack. A funny craving that I sometimes have is ice, especially ice that's really easy to eat like the ice at Sonic. I remember having a really strong ice craving before and after giving birth to Cedric. I asked my midwife and she said it can be related to low iron and indeed my iron was on the low end of normal. So I'm taking an iron supplement a couple times per week and seem to not be craving ice as much. Bodies are so weird.
Exercise: Still showing up three times per week! I'm now only walking on the treadmill at Orange Theory and try to get my heart rate up by increasing the incline. This week I noticed that biking (which I do instead of rowing) is getting a little uncomfortable with my big belly. At High Fitness I'm modifying any jumping movement which helps my feet not to hurt. Plus jumping just doesn't sound comfortable. When I can I go to a Saturday morning prenatal yoga class. I still bike the boys to and from school and am pretty sure I can keep it up until delivery. My belly is getting in the way a bit now but apparently I shouldn't get too much bigger at this point.
Sleep: Pretty much the same as at 32 weeks which is to say disrupted. I think I've forgotten to mention that another sleep annoyance is that I sometimes get restless legs as I'm trying to go to sleep. I've gotten it before during pregnancy – what a weird symptom! I read that it could be linked to low iron and maybe it's gotten a little better since taking an iron supplement – ? I'm also trying to take a hot shower or bath before bed on most nights and that also seems to help.
Preparing for another baby: I am so happy to report that we've made HUGE progress on this since my last update, which was essentially that we still needed to do everything. We've put the nursery together and are so in love with the space. We have a stroller, infant car seat, baby bath tub, diapers, clothes, and swaddles. My bag for the birth center is just about packed including a knotted gown and the sweetest little outfit. I bought myself nursing bras, a robe, and a couple other post-partum/nursing items from Kindred Bravely (thank you for the recommendation, Abby!). Importantly we got new car seats for the boys and were able to fit all three car seats in the backseat of the Prius – hallelujah!! We had read online that it should work but I breathed a big sigh of relief when Chris fit them all in. We also have a call with our sleep coach scheduled, which is something I mentioned wanting to do in my last post.
Last weekend my dear friend hosted a perfect brunch baby shower for me and we were gifted books, diapers, the sweetest clothes, and several other things we needed. Tonight Chris and I will attend an orientation at our birth center where we'll learn the specifics about "the big day." I'm thinking about the birth a lot and like to visualize where I'll be so I'm looking forward to seeing the birth rooms again and envisioning meeting our baby there. Wow.
Looking forward to: The birth center tour, like I mentioned, and getting curtains hung in the nursery which should be the last thing the room needs. I'm also looking forward to editing the last few podcast episodes and putting that work aside for a while (episodes will still be publishing regularly though!). I'm feeling nesty and just want to clean, make meals and snacks to stock the freezer, and savor this time of anticipation. My mom will be in town starting on March 22 so I'm hoping our girl will wait until then (my due date is March 26). I'd love to have a couple days to spend with my mom before the birth. I'm so curious to see when her birthday will be!